As 2012 draws to a close, we look forward to 2013 in anticipation of the exciting changes in marketing for any business! People’s habits have changed and evolved so your marketing needs to adapt as well. That’s fun part of marketing; there are always new ways to reach more customers, especially online. So what will 2013 bring? I don’t use a crystal ball, but there are strong indicators and emerging trends that will continue and new ones that have potential for growth.
Content creation, such as business blogging and article posting, isn’t new, but it’s definitely been talked about a lot in 2012 and will continue to be a popular way for businesses to market. With proof that blogging and new content boost traffic and leads (ie. Companies with 51-100 pages generate 48% more traffic than companies with 1-50 pages), we’ll see more and more companies using this tactic.
Video is still hot going into 2013. People like to watch a short video as a way to take in information. (Humorous or entertaining videos also work really well!) You can publish on your blog, like we’ve done with our How to Create a Pinterest Business Profile video and How to Save Time with Message Scheduling for Social Media video. These videos provide step-by-step instructions on how to do something that is valuable to our audience. What does your audience want to know about? Create a short video with some explanations or “how-to” and post it on your blog and YouTube channel.
Mobile marketing has started to gain some traction among marketers. It’s especially useful for teenagers and young adults who grow up using a smartphone (and get their own phones at a young age!) Of the 4 billion mobile phones in use worldwide, 3 billion are SMS enabled. SMS messages have endless marketing capabilities as it goes far beyond its use for personal communication – it is also an ideal medium for delivering an instant promotional message. This application-to-person type of messaging has undeniable potential and is very easy to apply. In fact we have a very simple system you can use to SMS your customers whenever you’d like to boost sales for peanuts!
Social media will definitely continue as a marketing trend in 2013, but I think we’ll start to see some shifts in the ways businesses use it and what platforms they invest time and energy into. Pinterest has really become a high source of traffic for many companies who predominately target women and I think we’ll still see some growth here. With Facebook’s recent changes to their feed though and what content they display, I anticipate many businesses will become frustrated that most of their followers aren’t seeing their content unless they pay for a sponsored placement. Perhaps we’ll even see a resurgence of Myspace?
Don’t underestimate the power of print. Sure, social media, blogging, and other forms of digital marketing are the rage (see above), however, because of our fixation on all things digital, our interaction with print becomes more valuable. However, companies using print as part of their marketing mix will need to ensure a high value offer or else it will be overlooked.
Social media was like the shiny new toy at the beginning of 2012. Companies quickly jumped on board and created accounts without much strategy or links to their other marketing tactics. There has been a slight shift over the course of the year towards more integration between “traditional media” and social media. I expect this to continue and deepen as businesses realize the benefits of integrated campaigns, where multiple marketing channels work together towards a common goal.
What to measure? How to measure? Can we even measure? For a while, businesses were using social media without any concern about a return on investment. The tools are (generally) free to use, but the time and effort it takes to engage with followers has a cost. The C-Suite and business owners started to question the value of these tools and questioned the ROI. And it makes sense. It beneficial for companies to know where their leads come from, what type of content drives online conversion, what percentage of leads turn into sales, how engaged is your online community, and so on. With software such as HubSpot or HootSuite, it becomes a lot easier to measure the results. If you aren’t sure how to implement these trends for your business, contact us! We’ll be happy to start a conversation with you about how you can use marketing to see company growth for 2013!
What are you planning for 2013? What trends are you currently implementing? What will you add this coming year?